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Zephyr Institute, Inc.

560 College Ave

Palo Alto, CA 94306, USA

(650) 667-1160 |

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Tuesdays October 29 - November 19, 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Polarization and Populism in American Politics and Society

Discussion group led by Brian Coyne, Lecturer in Political Science, Stanford University

Time & Location

Tuesdays October 29 - November 19, 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.


It’s now a commonplace to call American society and politics divided: politically, economically, even in overall worldview. This four-session reading and discussion group seeks to go beyond the day-to-day headlines to investigate the deeper causes and effects of this division. We’ll see how charges of elitism and suspicion of the ability of ordinary people to rule animate debates going back to the founding of the country and read some of the recent scholarship that tries to make sense of populism. We’ll also look at the role of universities using new data on the role of race and class in university admissions and economic mobility. Overall, the goal of these sessions is to provide a forum for open and honest discussion about some of the most pressing political issues today, open to all viewpoints and ideas. Readings will be provided in advance, but we’ll use these to orient and inform our discussions, not limit them.


To register, please email Brian Coyne at




Lecturer, Department of Political Science, Stanford University

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